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24 Strategist-Approved Host Gifts (That You Can Buy at Nordstrom)

Photo-Illustration: The Strategist; Photos: Retailers

So there’s a fancy dinner party or a long weekend at a friend of a friend’s beach house coming up on your calendar, and you want to gift the host a token of your appreciation. You could go with an old, reliable standby — a bottle of wine, a bouquet of flowers — or you could get a little more creative and earn brownie points and the title of most thoughtful guest. Below, we’ve rounded up some of our favorite host gifts (all of which we’ve written about before) that are available to buy at Nordstrom. From bath salts to bento boxes, these picks are guaranteed to score you an invite back.

For the host who drizzles everything with olive oil

Brightland’s signature EVOO, which Anna Hezel, senior editor at Taste, says “everyone in food media seems to be totally nuts for,” was included in our roundup of the best olive oils. The brand sources its olives from California and packages the final product in a Matisse-inspired bottle that’ll add a bit of flair to their kitchen counter.

For the host who never wastes leftovers

The Takenaka Bento Box has been a Strategist favorite ever since contributor Leah Bhabha described how it “makes packing a meal feel like a treat instead of a sacrifice.” Bhabha likes that the box snaps shut securely, has two layers to separate saucy and dry foods, and comes in lots of cute colors, including this cheerful Poketo-designed option. And if you want to go all out, you can gift it prefilled with fancy caramels or other wrapped candy.

For the host who loves the great outdoors

Diptyque’s Figuier is a sweet, fresh, green fragrance that will conjure the feeling of hiking through the California redwoods. The scent is so iconic that Strategist writer Tembe Denton-Hurst named it a Best in Class candle, and it’s also vouched for by Victoria Beckham, who says it’s become the signature scent of her flagship store on Dover Street: “Everyone who walks in always talks about the amazing smell of the store, and that’s just because of the candle,” she says.

For the host who’s more of an indoor kid

Or, if their favorite activity is curling up on the couch, this Margiela By the Fireplace candle smells “warm and woodsy with a little touch of cinnamon,” according to florist Ryan Norville. She’s owned “a lot of luxury candles and many of them don’t pay off in the scent department,” but this one “really fills a room.”

For the host who could use a post-party pick-me-up

Dermatologists and aestheticians recommend this luxurious and refreshing Dr. Barbara Sturm face mist, especially after spending time in the sun. Shen Beauty founder Jessica Richards says the aloe ingredient “makes [her] skin feel less parched,” adding that it’s “ideal for hydration.”

For the host who gets stressed making sure everything is just right

Help them relax and take a breather with these Lord Jones CBD bath salts. Strategist senior writer Liza Corsillo reports that the salts helped “soothe [her] tense back and shoulders”; after soaking in the tub for a bit, she felt “ready to fall into a deep sleep.”

For the host who enjoys experimenting with new cuisines

Graphic designer Naomi Otsu recommends this set of East Asian and Southeast Asian spice kits from Omsom, a company that appears in our guide to the best edible gifts. “These starter seasoning packets make it so easy to switch up a weekday dinner,” she says. “Not to mention, they’re delicious!”

For the host with a quirky design sense

Dusen Dusen’s fun, zany patterns will definitely appeal to their aesthetic sensibility. Coming Soon co-owners Fabiana Faria and Helena Barquet love drying off with the brand’s terry robes after a long day of swimming: “They’re great, especially at the end of the day when it’s windy,” Faria says.

For the host whose dog is always a guest of honor

Le Puzz’s cheeky puzzles are among our favorite gifts for best friends, so we’re sure any dog-loving host will be delighted by this image of an adorable pup in heart-shaped sunglasses.

For the host who suffers from insomnia

Made from 100 percent silk, this luxurious eye mask from Slip is certain to help them nod off. Jimmy Choo co-founder Tamara Mellon says it feels “really soft,” with a “nice squishy padded quality that’s comfortable on the face.” The mask lets her feel like she’s falling asleep “in a black hole.”

For the host who’s feeling a bit … rough

Help them heal dry, cracked skin with an ultrasoothing hand cream. Hand model Ariel Paredes counts this Chanel balm as one of her favorites because it absorbs quickly and doesn’t leave shine or residue. It also has a pleasantly subtle fragrance that is “so nice and relaxing,” Paredes says.

For the host with a sweet tooth

Jewelry designer Waris Ahluwalia informed us that “Charbonnel et Walker is one of Britain’s oldest chocolatiers” and that its top-quality chocolates make for a great gift because they’re “delicious and come in beautiful packaging.”

For the host who binged Only Murders in the Building

If they’re a Selena Gomez fan, they’ll love this set of tumblers from the actor’s collaboration with cookware brand Our Place. When Strategist writer Dominique Pariso tested the drinkware for herself, she found that the cups felt “wonderfully hefty in your hand, look more expensive than they are, and are great for drinking everything from water to old-fashioneds to wine.”

For the host who likes to grow their own garden-fresh garnish

This miniature smart garden, with small enough dimensions to fit on a kitchen counter, will allow them to incorporate the freshest of herbs and other homegrown produce into their cooking. Singer-songwriter Tayla Parx owns several Click & Grow gardens for growing “strawberries, salad greens, peppers, and all kinds of other things.”

For the host who prefers to wear their garden

Dauphinette’s adorable rosebud earrings were the best thing singer-songwriter Amanda Shires bought herself in 2020. “You don’t have to be a horticulturist to enjoy the happiness they bring,” Shires writes. “Plus, you can mix and match.”

For the host with an overflowing stash of beauty products

According to Strategist contributor Buzz Bissinger, this Beis cosmetics case “has room for about a dozen skin-care items” and enough compartments “for brushes and smaller items such as tweezers.” He’s especially a fan of the “cleverly designed” attached mirror that comes with a built-in stand.

For the host with an origami hobby

Writer and editor Hannah Morrill recommends gifting your host these rainbow-hued MoMA napkins because their “fun stand-alone multicolored palette” means “you don’t have to worry too much about matching your host’s dishes or décor style.” As a bonus, they come with printed fold-by-numbers instructions to create charming designs like the Standing Fan, the Bishop’s Hat, and the Rosebud.

For the host who makes regular spa appointments

Astrologer Susan Miller calls this Fresh brown-sugar body polish “the best exfoliant — soft, yet efficient.” She rubs it on her face with a little water right after showering and it “sloughs off all the dead cells you don’t even know you have,” leaving her skin so clean and smooth “that light reflects off it.”

For the host who’s always impeccably manicured

Strategist contributor Alice Gregory claims you can achieve an “instant French manicure” just by dabbing on this Dior Nail Glow. “The varnish is a translucent magenta in the bottle and goes on rosy-clear,” Gregory writes. “By the time it’s dried, the pink part of your nail is a little pinker, and the white part is a little whiter.”

For the host who only drinks IPAs

This kit, which we included in our roundup of the best Father’s Day food gifts, comes with everything they’ll need to brew their first batch of beer, including hops, IPA grain mix, and reusable equipment (including a glass fermentation jug and a thermometer).

For the host who makes a new playlist for every occasion

Furniture designer Ana Kras says this speaker “is the size of a quail egg and gives such a nice sound.” She carries hers around with her wherever she goes and has “already gifted many” to friends.

For the host who wears a fleece all year round

This Barefoot Dreams throw blanket is a Strategist best seller, and for good reason: It’s beloved by everyone from VSCO girls to Delilah Belle Hamlin to Brie Larson, who told us she bought one after hearing about it from her 13-year-old neighbor. Vlogger Marla Fay says it’s “the most amazing, soft, cuddly throw.”

For the host who likes to kick things up a notch

Yellowbird’s hot sauces are a hit among reviewers, with the brand’s habanero and jalapeño sauces both receiving top marks. One buyer who was searching for “an everyday hot sauce that isn’t blazing hot but would add a depth to the flavor of any dish” found it in the jalapeño, while another called out the habanero’s “beautiful citrus undertone with just the right about of spicy.” This sampler pack includes additional flavors such as serrano, blue agave sriracha, and ghost pepper.

For the host with a luxe skin-care routine

Model Paloma Elsesser calls this Vintner’s Daughter serum “pretty magical,” with a “beautiful smell” and texture that’s “light enough where I can put it on by itself during the day or put a moisturizer on top at night.” She uses her bottle all the way up until she has to “bang it against [her] hand to get the very last drop out.”

The Strategist is designed to surface the most useful, expert recommendations for things to buy across the vast e-commerce landscape. Some of our latest conquests include the best acne treatments, rolling luggage, pillows for side sleepers, natural anxiety remedies, and bath towels. We update links when possible, but note that deals can expire and all prices are subject to change.

24 Strategist-Approved Host Gifts (From Nordstrom)